The Coronavirus curve keeps rising in India, and as the number of confirmed cases reached 2.35 lakh on Friday, India crossed Italy in terms of Coronavirus caseload to become the sixth worst-hit country amidst the ongoing Pandemic.
With the benefit of hindsight, it has become clear that two Chief Ministers- Arvind Kejriwal and Uddhav Thackeray have failed an entire country putting it in the league of worst-affected countries of the world. Through their incompetence Delhi and Maharashtra alone account for 1,06,563 out of 2,37,756 cases in the country, which is roughly 45 per cent of the total caseload.
In terms of Coronavirus deaths, Delhi and Maharashtra’s contribution to all-India numbers is even higher. They together account for 3,557 out of 6,650 deaths, that is, more than half of total deaths.
But statistics are not enough to account for the level of their incompetence. Starting with Uddhav Thackeray, his indifference to the Coronavirus situation in the state has been rather ignominious and unconscionable. Uddhav, who has won support from an entire galaxy of Bollywood starts for apparently tackling the outbreak, has failed the entire state.
Mumbai alone accounts for 46,080 cases which is more than the number of total cases in other states and has also witnessed a whooping 1,519 deaths that is again higher than the number of COVID-19 deaths in any state of India except of course Maharashtra.
Maharashtra itself is reeling under the burden of 80,229 cases and at this pace it will soon overtake China’s ‘official tally’ of 83,030 cases.
Mumbai and Maharashtra have succumbed to the Wuhan virus Pandemic under the Chief Ministership of the Shiv Sena supremo Uddhav Thackeray.
To make matters worse, the Maharashtra Police too has been hit hard by the ongoing Pandemic- 2,561 police personnel have tested positive for the virus and 33 have succumbed to it.
In the last 24 hours, no police personnel tested positive for #COVID19, however, 2 personnel succumbed to the infection. Total number of police personnel who have tested positive for the virus is at 2,561; death toll stands at 33: Maharashtra Police pic.twitter.com/sVC8xSeRGe
— ANI (@ANI) June 6, 2020
Recently, a video posted by Nitesh Rane, allegedly from the Dharavi area- one of the worst-affected areas in Mumbai, exposed why police personnel are testing positive at such a worrying rate- they could be seen sleeping without any social distancing measures and facilities on pavements, many of them not wearing even protective masks.
Many hospitals in Maharashtra that were supposed to contain the Coronavirus outbreak have themselves been overwhelmed by the rising number of cases, and some hospitals even became COVID-19 hotspots.
In Pune, a huge cluster took a grip of the DY Patil Hospital after 92 hospital staffers were put in quarantine in April after a patient, who was undergoing treatment, tested positive for the novel Coronavirus.
Last month, a video went viral in which COVID-19 patients were seen lying next to dead bodies covered in black plastic bags at the LTMG hospital (Sion hospital) in Mumbai’s Sion area, exposing how Maharashtra’s public health infrastructure is in disarray amidst the ongoing Pandemic.
Even the lockdown was not strictly enforced in Mumbai and when the Coronavirus curve was rising abruptly in April, a major migrant crisis unfolded that led to a major tumult at Bandra defeating the idea of a lockdown and social distancing in the first place.
Coming to Delhi, we cannot really complain, can we? Kejriwal has time and again promised to put Delhi in the league of world cities like London. Today, London has more than 27,000 COVID-19 cases, while Delhi has more than 26,000. Kejriwal is working progressively towards fulfilling his promises.
Numbers in Delhi have risen in a rather abrupt manner. As of May 27, there were 303 recorded COVID-19 deaths in the national capital. The number has now risen to 708. Thus, more than 400 deaths took place in around 10 days. In the past one week, there has been a massive surge in the number of cases too, and more than thousand cases have been recorded everyday in the past one week.
On Wednesday Delhi recorded 1,513 new cases which was more than even Mumbai showing how Delhi may be heading towards a similar fate as the Maharashtra capital. Delhi did open its borders with the neighbouring state of Haryana only to seal them a day later showing how the national capital has plunged into a state of chaos.
Meanwhile, Delhi’s Chief Minister Kejriwal cannot get rid of parochialism and regional bias. Closing the borders with other states, he claimed that Delhi has the best healthcare facilities compared to other states and people from other states will rush to the national capital for treatment and the “9,000 beds available here will be occupied within two days”, if the interstate borders aren’t sealed.
Kejriwal also has a ‘brilliant’ strategy for reducing COVID-19 cases, that is, stop testing people. He requested asymptomatic patients not to get tested for the novel virus. The Delhi CM said, “The priority is to save the lives of serious patients. Those with mild symptoms or are asymptomatic can be recovered. If all asymptomatic patients will start going to the labs for tests, then the system will get collapsed. Asymptomatic people should not insist for getting tested. If they are going to get tested then the serious patients will suffer.”
Meanwhile, the populist character of Kejriwal’s governance is now taking a toll on Delhi government’s fiscal health. Recently, the Delhi government turned to the central government by demanding ₹5,000 crore assistance to be able to pay salaries to its employees.
Uddhav Thackeray and Arvind Kejriwal’s inefficiency and maladministration have put India in the league of countries with heaviest COVID-caseload. They have not only failed their respective electorates, but have also shamed the nation at a global level.